How To Make Money Selling Drugs

Last night I took in the documentary “How To Make Money Selling Drugs” as part of the Toronto International Film Festival. The topic of drug dealing is definitely presented in an entertaining manner.

It’s also very smart how the documentary unfolds: Start with flash of the “How”, interviewing many-a-past-drug-dealer (characters indeed) and then, near the end, hit them with the real message — Things would be better if we legalized drugs — even hard drugs. The intriguing title and production gets people listening — then sell them the serious message further on in the doc. I don’t think anyone can say the “War On Drugs” is working (hello Mexico?), so is this alternative worth trying? One briefly cited example is Portugal (where personal possession was decriminalized).

Also in play in the doc is how much the US government pays out in their “War” on drugs. Meaning, police departments get more money for better stats in terms of drug arrests so there’s focus on that when many will argue the effort is more needed elsewhere.

In the Q&A afterwards, one of the former dealers (Canadian no less) was on hand. He mentioned that what is happening now isn’t working so why not try something else. Valid. He also mentioned the commercial side of things — corporations wanting to take over running jails in the US, provided they’re guaranteed at least 80% capacity over the next x years. Hmmm…

The trailer:

Watch full documentary online:

(This review originally written in September 2012)

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